American Greetings Reviews

Updated September 2, 2015
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American Greetings CEO and Director Zev Weiss
Zev Weiss
31 Ratings

Pros
  • Job Flexibility, Work Life balance, Lunches and organized events within the company (in 10 reviews)

  • flexible schedule, truly just a part time job (in 11 reviews)

Cons
  • Lack of long-term strategy, weak senior management, lack of compelling career paths, and general inertia are problems (in 9 reviews)

  • Upper management was our challenge (in 9 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

63 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    Has the potential to be so much more -but isn't.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Graphic Designer in Cleveland, OH
    Current Employee - Senior Graphic Designer in Cleveland, OH
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    I really like the work that I do.

    Cons

    Senior management is incompetent and they tend to hire other incompetent managers from the top down. Senior management is overpaid as they are brought in with high salaries, but do not have to be accountable. No incentives for them to make a positive difference as they have their big salaries. American Greetings ownership believe dollars bring in top senior management. Has not show to be the case. They take the money for their 3-5 year contracts and then leave. A lot of other competent people could perform these management jobs for a lot less that are good and hard workers-and be offered incentive packages if they reach certain goals. There is a lost of dead weight not only in management but in non management positions. However, during downsizing, good workers are often cut by incompetent management as they are unaware of the value and skill level of their staff.

    Advice to Management

    To many unqualified managers and too little people to do the work. Thus sub par product.


  2. Pay attention to your Merchandisers. They run the company...

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Area Supervisor in Cleveland, OH
    Current Employee - Area Supervisor in Cleveland, OH
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Company car and free gas for travel anywhere/anytime. And it is truly free. Benefits are ok but you get vacation time from the start - 2 weeks. Running your own territory from your home office. YOur boss isnt (always) looking right over your shoulder. For the most part you run your own territory and manage your employees. Set your own hours, just get the work done. Which means you will be working alot.

    Cons

    You can set your own hours, but there is always too much to do. Information from World Headquarters is sometimes slow trickling down to the field. My merchandisers will tell me about a new program shipped to them before I know about it. AS do not have real selling responsibilites and have to defer to the Account Exec at headquarters to make needed changes in account at times. That takes time and frustration. Depends on your DM how involved they are in your day to day functions. The previous DM did not realize that the AS I replaced had basically stopped working for the prevous year. My current Dm though micromanages and has driven a few veteran (20+ yr) AS's to early retirement. It all depends. AG will send you to the field to work anwhere in the country with no regard to personal preference or hardships of being comletely alone in a new place/city/state. Some people have a hard time with that.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to the merchandisers. They are the backbone of this company and most have been doing it for longer than you. We need them to make the ideas you have come to fruition, and paying them minimum wage and arguing about their store preferences and how they dont matter will not get you ahead.


  3. Helpful (1)

    Well-known name company to work for, but lot of room for improvement.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Product Management in Cleveland, OH
    Current Employee - Product Management in Cleveland, OH
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The people. Hands down the people are what motivate me to get up every morning and come into work. I have never once experienced cut-throat behavior. Everyone is very supportive and everyone recognizes this is a tough place to work and try their best to help each other out. They have a great paid time off/vacation policy, they pay very well (from my experience at other companies, at least), and its fun to work for a company where you actually get to see the product at retail.

    Cons

    The company restructured a year and a half ago, and its created more problems than its solved. We have lost the ability to get things done in an efficient manner, now what we have to go through so many levels of approval to get anything moving. There is such a talented staff here, but the morale and motivation has swiftly decreased. Something as simple as explaining in detail the role of these new departments shouldn't take a year and a half to do - its leaving everyone frustrated.

    Advice to Management

    The people are what make this company. The economy is beginning to slowly recover and other companies are starting to hire again - keep your people from leaving by really taking the time to see what is causing your employees to feel so frustrated and unaccomplished.


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  5. Former Recycled Paper Greetings now American Greetings.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    There are good people working who recognize issues within in the company and how to work around it. Well structured organization with defined roles.

    Cons

    Treat employees like children, a corporate culture that frowns on team cohesiveness. No loitering or there will be an infraction point. Oh if you are 'careless' whatever that really means based on the interpretation of your manager you get an infraction point. Thank God it was never implemented in Chicago well at least until after all the layoffs. American Greetings has multitude of silos that have no idea what the other group is doing and works in a top down approach where the real plan was decided months ago and they are just waiting for the rest of the corporation to finally get with it and change to their inane direction based on facts that will only support their original decision. When I am mean silos I mean the organization will have different person each week who has joined the team because now some activity falls under their purview and demands that everything that had been done be redone so they understand what the heck is going on. Despite having tons of project managers they have no concept of what a project manager really does. A belief in using a tool makes you a pm without full understanding of basic PM concepts boggles the mind. The inability to think outside of the box is another failing point because it directly opposes the entire culture of silo management structure within AG.

    Advice to Management

    Its time AG change from a silo approach to a diverse organization with smaller cross team divisions may help bring about the change needed. Recognizing that you need a stronger IT organization supporting innovative ways to bring about change and build the right technology. Rapid response, creativity and having edge instead direct conformity are something that that needs to change within AG. Spending an exorbitant amount of money on a Marketing technology solution when you could have used an existing tool such as sharepoint which AG already owned was shocking to say the least.


  6. Helpful (1)

    Frustrating

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Copywriter in Cleveland, OH
    Former Employee - Copywriter in Cleveland, OH
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The staff was made up of a wide variety of creative minds. The building itself was also conducive to endless creative brainstorming and opportunities.

    Cons

    The senior management was very disorganized. They neglected to communicate efficiently and effectively with their staff, and it became a very frustrating and disappointing work environment.

    Advice to Management

    Keep an open line of communication with your employees. Continually talk to them about what is happening in the company, and give them feedback on their performance.


  7. Helpful (1)

    Start looking before your trapped like me.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Area Supervisor in West Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Area Supervisor in West Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The people. That's it. The end

    Cons

    Weissville sucks. Company does extensive searches for the most qualified people named Weiss. Long hours low pay unless your a Weiss then it big pay. Lost as a company . Watch what Hallmark does and we will be doing it in 6 months. Treat PTMs like crap. Work people off the clock all the time.

    Advice to Management

    Sell the company, and retire


  8. Working a very physical job that provides only seasonal employment.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Press Operator in Greeneville, TN
    Current Employee - Press Operator in Greeneville, TN
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    It's one of the top paying factories in my county. We have a company paid union pension which makes retirement possible. Associates get along well and form strong bonds. In general the supervisors are good people and take up for their people.

    Cons

    Very skilled employees are laid off 3 to 4 months of the year, without insurance coverage when laid off. Almost no chance of promotion, regardless of skill or education. Entry level managers are usually friends and/or family of upper management.

    Advice to Management

    Take a good look at the people available on the floor before choosing supervisors.


  9. Worked with some great people, learned a lot, everyday is a new and different day. Working with merchandisers and mgrs.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Area Supervisor in Jersey City, NJ
    Former Employee - Area Supervisor in Jersey City, NJ
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Flexible schedule In different account/locstion every day Great peers

    Cons

    Large workload Very little support Not realitics Merchanidsers get few hours and in some case miss one week of service.

    Advice to Management

    None


  10. Helpful (1)

    Some managers better than others

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Analyst in Cleveland, OH
    Current Employee - Analyst in Cleveland, OH
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The pay is good and there are some manages that are very good at what they do. The onsight resturant is amazing!

    Cons

    Upper management is not understanding working families. During their performance review process they have a policy that 10% of all employees are put on a performance improvement plan. It's pretty miserable working with that 10% who didn't get raises and don't understand why. Hours are long and often the expectations are not realistic Work in a silo, no communication or interaction between departments that should be working collaboratively.

    Advice to Management

    You offer tunition reimbursement to those seeking an MBA, however you are not creating an enviroment that is flexible to allow people to leave by 5 once a week if they are in class.


  11. Helpful (3)

    PRG - Where you're lucky to have a job!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    This review is for the Papyrus-Recycled office located in Chicago, IL. Located downtown and close to public transportation Wonderful and interesting coworkers for the most part Great resources and people at WHQ in Cleveland Fun product and talented freelance artist. A few very good middle managers

    Cons

    In the past few years the culture of the company has completely changed. The schedule is not flexible at all, there is no regard for people's time, poor or no pay raises, and no diversity at all. The turn over rate is becoming higher and management seems only concerned with hiring people from Target or the trenches of Sears. This leaves little for innovation. The company is run by type A upper management lacking proper leadership skills and completely out of touch. Instead, they are more concerned with creating a sense of fear and then forcing the company into "fun" competitive games under their terms constantly. Also, those in charge do not know how to use or grow the talent they have and the talent they do have has one foot out the door always. For being in such a large city there is little to no diversity. It's shocking actually.

    Advice to Management

    Stop worrying about menial stuff and look around you for a moment. Stop being passive, start treating people like adults. Look at how successful modern companies run a business because the way you're running it is old fashioned, out-dated, and stuffy. We are selling greeting cards, smiles, and humor. It should be a fun place to work not fear based and competitive. Do you want talented and loyal people to want to work here, or would you rather just have a high turn over rate and keep paying people less and less? You can still be corporate while maintaining a unique voice. Both upper and middle management need to stop being so passive. Middle management, the leadership skills are there, stop being so fearful of upper management and stick up for your employees. Their happiness and growth is vital to your success as a manager.



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